The weather has just been amazing the past week. Fathers day was a scorcher and my man asked if we could spend the evening by the river. There is a pub a few villages over with a lovely river in the garden where the children like to play. It is shallow and fast running so great fun. The bonus is that there are fish and cray fish to try and catch.
Monday, 19 June 2017
Monday, 22 May 2017
This week we are looking at "Bb" letter recognition and sound.
We swapped out "Aa" tray and items for a "Bb" one and the children helped me find lots of "b" items. We found this much easier than for the "a".
A fun activity is to male a little story up using the "b" items. So in our story bear ate brocolli for breakfast and then went on a boat. But he was too big and couldn't balance so fell off. But the badgers were a better fit and all fitted on the boat.
Saturday, 20 May 2017
We have been looking at our number and alphabet books a lot this week. I have a cute set of books called Canada ABC and Canada 123. Little W really liked these and it was nice to learn some knew words.
He found "T" for Totem poles really interesting. We looked at the different animals and faces on the poles in the pictures and this led to conversations about what they are and why they are made.
It might be cool to extend this with a week of celebration for Canada day around the 1st July and also to make clay or play dough totems.
We are quite late on this I know but we finally planted our sunflower seeds. My eldest son took his cousin outside and helped him plant seeds in the planter outside our kitchen window. How lovely will it be when they grow! We will be able to see them from the house and they will be a sunny greeting to anyone coming to the house!
They covered up the soil with a propagater lid so the birds and bugs don't eat them as they start to grow.
Let's hope the sunflowers encourage the sun to stay. It pops out for a day and then the rain comes back again..... come on sunflower magic!
After a quick observation of the current children in my setting, I noticed that most could recognise numerals to 3. I suspect this has something to do with those numbers having been relevant to them in their lives as an age. With this in mind I decided to set our first number tray up to start at 4.
I used a cheap pack of playing cards from the pound shop and stuck all the 4 cards on to a tray. Then collected sets of 4 small items so that the children could count to and recognise groups of 4 and the matching numeral.
This is a simple activity that can be made at home with items you already own. Link this with some number rhymes and board books and you have some lovely play opportunities for reinforcing mathematical learning.
I find setting up play trays a really goo544wd way to focus the children1's interest and play. It's like curiosity sets in and they all want to know what fun the tray hqqàolds today!! Maybe I should set up a tea making tray and train the little ones up early on! 😊
This week our letter is Aa. I used flash cards stuck to the tray and a little wooden "a" for the introduction to the letter and then added some toys that start with the letter. We also watch the Jolly Phonics rhyme that goes with each letter on You Tube and sing itwa while playing. Through the week items get added to the tray as we find more things that start with that letter.
I have also made a point of looking through ABC books each day with the children to reinforce the letter and sound recognition.
Sunday, 30 April 2017
Lions eat every 3-4 days! I guess it is hard to build up an appetite if you never move!
They eat BIG meals rather than the little and often we tend to eat. Imagine how you feel after an "eat as much as you like" buffet!! Now I understand why they sleep for 21 hours!
Lions live in social groups and keep the bond with their family strong by leaning and rubbing against each other. See how they all cuddle as they sleep. They also use softer calls to show they mean no threat and being friendly to the other lions in their group.
Fork lion head pictures.
Reminding little ones not to touch can be tricky with them so tantalizingly close but it is important for the Butterfly safety.
They had so many colours and varieties there that I am sure I only saw a fraction of them. Some are great at hiding and have amazing camouflaged wings once they are closed up. The look like a piece of bark or a leaf.
(This is my opinion of the Butterfly house and I have not been asked or paid to review it)
Well you know what........ When i was growing up, we didn't care what colour a toy was. Everything was bold and bright. Primary colours. Dolls buggies were mini versions of the real thing. Mini orange and brown striped Maclarans like mum and dad had! My dolls pram was navy corduroy and my sisters was burgundy. This is what I found in ToyRus today.......
Dolls with pink packaging, buggies in pink and lilac, not a single item of clothing for a boy doll. No jeans, babygrows or tops that are not pink. Baths and high chairs... no they are pink too. My advice to buy gender neutral for your children's dolls..... go to Build a Bear!! The clothes they sell are cool and all the children in my setting use the build a bear clothing on my dolls.
Lego have really lost respect in my view the past few years. They used to be the role for gender neutral toys and to be fair I see no need for them to have sold out and introduce their "Lego friends" brand. This is pastel colours and the sets pretty much show girls shopping and drinking tea in cafes. Sometimes they are running a boutique or a puppy parlor! Is this all our girls can aspire too?
They already have a brand that appeals to both genders with strong roles for each. Their "city" range shows both genders as firefighters, law enforcement, vets and so on. As does their "Easy to build" range.
Their Elves range is a great introduction to fantasy without the extreme pink packaging and the use of male and female Elves means it is appealing to all.
Mega Blox are one of the worst....... Instead of one product for all.... we must add pink and then brand it to girls. Why?
Vtech though.... they have to be the worst offenders in this. Pushing gender stereo type from birth. WHY do they feel the need to brand the same toy in two colours? Blue and pink. Conditioning starting from birth.... This is where it starts. Our children's open minds start to be programmed to pink and blue. Girls and boys toys.
As I reached the "PINK ZONE" in ToysRus I actually saw a dad and his two boys walking towards me. The dad stopped at the sight of pink and turned around. Saying to his boys "This is all the girls toys,There's nothing for you up there"....... and off they went....... A whole section of toys and experiences denied these boys because the shop became very pink!
The facts are clear. Children need a wide range of toys and experiences to develop in a well rounded way. They are bright beings and quite capable of deciding for themselves what they enjoy and what toys interest them. Marketing and packaging is now influencing our children and guiding them to what the manufacturers consider socially acceptable. This creates generations of children and inevitably adults who have be pre conditioned to like pink because they are girls. like cars and guns because they are boys. Why and how have we let this happen. It has been creeping up on us for years but the divide is so great now that it has become more obvious...... but can we change it back? Has it gone too far to reverse?
In my childcare setting children have full access to all toys no matter what. Colour is considered when I buy them and I try and keep things primary or neutral coloured. Sadly once the children leave me and start school I start to hear gender stereotyping showing it's very unwelcome face.
"That's a boys toy" or "That's a girl colour". I was actually asked why one of the toddlers in my care, a little girl, had a Thomas the tank engine lunch box. Girls don't have lunch boxes like that.